Journey through the Alps


Steinach (1049m) to Geraer Hütte DAV (2326m)


25 February 2017

Stage A08

Maps: Austria ÖAV 1:25,000 – 35/1 Zillertaler Alpen West, Austria ÖAV 1:50,000 – 31/3 Brennerberge

Time: 8.30hrs (depart 08.40, arrive 17.10)

Distance: 21.2km (ascent 1326m, descent 102m)

Weather: Clear, hot, sunny

Notes: 11km of walking along the road via St Jodok and Vals until it is possible to use skis at the end of the paved road (1345m). Follow the obvious trail along the valley floor until the base station of the service lift for the Geraer hut (1600m). A good path climbs NE via a series of zig zags to a farm building at Ochsnerhutte, then takes a gently rising traverse SE. The hut lies on the far side of a steep ravine and it is important to cross this by the line of the summer footpath, approx 50m below the height of the hut.

Accommodation: The old hut is used as the winter room. It is locked and needs an OEV key to gain entry. It is quite basic and draughty with solar lighting and a very old, partly functional, wood stove.

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Geraer Hütte DAV (2326m) to Olperer Hütte DAV (2388m)S26

26 February 2017

Stage A09

Map: Austria ÖAV 1:25,000 – 35/1 Zillertaler Alpen West

Time: 5.30hrs (depart 08.15, arrive 13.45)

Distance: 11.5km (ascent 950m, descent 872m)

Weather: Generally fine, slightly overcast.

Notes: climb from the hut along the line of the summer footpath to the Wildlahnerscharte 3254m which gives access to the Hintertux ski area. The final 100m of climbing follows a shelf between two bands of seracs but should be OK in most conditions. Ski down through the ski area and continue to descend for approx 400m after the bottom of the final ski tow. This is a south-facing slope and can have exposed rocks. A route slightly (skiers) left of the summer footpath markers opens into a snow filled gully that can be skied to the hut.

Accommodation: The Olperer is a modern hut with a small separate winter hut. It is well insulated and very comfortable with wood stove and solar lighting.

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Olperer Hütte DAV (2388m) to Berliner Hütte DAV (2042m)S26

27 February 2017

Stage A10

Map: Austria ÖAV 1:25,000 – 35/1 Zillertaler Alpen West

Time: 7.45hrs (depart 07.30, arrive 15.15)

Distance: 22.8km (ascent 815m, descent 1164m)

Weather: Clear and sunny, becoming windy in the afternoon

Notes: Ski down towards the lake following the summer footpath where possible (south facing / possible poor snow cover). Follow the hydro dam access road down the Grund valley to Breitlahner then turn SE up the Zemmgrund valley. Pass several summer only hotels on the way to the Berliner Hutte on a good track.

Accommodation: The Berliner Hutte is a large grand structure. The winter room is a little more modest with a functioning wood stove, and non-functioning solar lights.

Accommodation options: There are two private hotels in the Zemmgrund valley that may be open during the later ski season: a hotel at Breitlahner (1256m) and a guesthouse at Grawand (1636m). However splitting the journey between the Geraer and Berliner Huts at Olperer gives two days of equal length.

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Bad weather day

Berliner Hutte DAV (2042m)

28 February 2017

Weather: Snowfall and strong winds all day. No movement possible.


Berliner Hütte DAV (2042m) to Ginzling (1000m)

(Unable to proceed due to dangerous snow conditions - drop down into valley)

1 March 2017

Time: 5.00hrs (dept 08.30, arrive 13.30)

Distance: 17.9km (ascent 70m, descent 1173m)

Weather: Slightly overcast: sunshine and clouds

Notes: ski in deep snow to Breitlahner then hike along the road for 8km to Ginzling.

Purchased food supplies in Mayrhofen.

Accommodation: Schwarzenstein Hotel in Ginzling is comfortable with a helpful owner.


Ginzling (1000m) to Berliner Hütte DAV (2042m)

2 March 2017

Time: 4.15hrs (dept 10.30, arrive 14.30)

Distance: 9.7km (ascent 828m, descent 26m)

Weather: Slightly overcast in the morning, very overcast with light snow in the afternoon.

Notes: Taxi from Ginzling to Breitlahner then reascend the trail to the hut following our tracks from the day before.


Berliner Hütte DAV (2042m) to St Johan (1017m)S26

3 March 2017

Stage A11

Map: Austria ÖAV 1:25,000 – 35/2 Zillertaler Alpen Mitte

Time: 10.15hrs (dept 07.15, arrive 17.30)

Distance: 25.9 km (ascent 1365m / descent 2381m)

Weather: Mostly overcast and very strong winds

Notes: Leaving the hut it is not necessary to follow the summer trail (marked trail 502). Instead cross to SE side of the Kastenklamm river and cross the flat area to pt 2139m and climb directly to the cairn marked at 2493m. Then follow the marked trail towards Felskopfl 3235m. Climbing to the summit and then descending directly south is a reliable option, but involves a moderately difficult downclimb of 50m. A direct route on the glacier 50m west of the summit and 30m lower is also possible but may be difficult to assess from above (possible cornice). The Schwarzenstein hut has been rebuilt and relocated (2017) approx 200m NW of the position marked on the map. Descent from the hut is easier than the map would indicate in the snow bowl to the west of the old hut location. Follow the approx line of the summer path down as far as Daimerhutte 2109m, then follow the forest road as far as Stalleler 1472m. It may be necessary to walk the final 2-3 km to St Johan.

Accommodation: There are several hotels in St Johan. The Parkhotel Schachen is the first one, and is OK.

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St Johan (1017m) to Kasern (1600m)S26

4 March 2017

Stage A12

Map: Austria ÖAV 1:25,000 – 35/2 Zillertaler Alpen Mitte & 35/3 Zillertaler Alpen Ost

Time: 4.00hrs (dept 11.40, arrive 15.40)

Distance: 19.6 km (ascent 612m, descent 46m)

Weather: Mostly overcast with light rain in evening

Notes: It may be possible to ski parts of the route in a good snow year, but we walked along the road for the whole way.

Accommodation: Berghotel Kasern is a popular ski touring base at the head of the valley.

Resupply options: The Spar shop in Steinhaus is the only option in the Ahrntal valley.

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Bad weather day in Kasern

5 March 2017

Weather: snowfall all day



David Hamilton
High Adventure
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CV10 0SG


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